Local Businessman Rod Hissong Continues Immigration Speaker Series October 26

Rod Hissong, co-owner of Mercer Vu Farms, was the featured speaker at a school meeting Friday, October 26 in the Irvine Memorial Chapel as Mercersburg Academy continues a three-week session of discussions on the topic of immigration.
Mercer Vu Farms, which is about a mile southwest of the Academy campus, produces more than 42 million pounds of milk each year, supports more than 170 agricultural jobs, and provides more than $22 million of economic stimulus to the region. Hissong has addressed the Pennsylvania Committee on Agriculture and is past president of the Professional Dairy Managers of Pennsylvania; in early November, he will be honored as the 2018 Dairy Science Distinguished Alumnus by the Department of Animal Science at his alma mater, Penn State University.

“As a school, we believe it is critically important to ask students to engage respectfully and thoughtfully with key issues facing our nation and our world,” says Julia Stojak Maurer ’90, Mercersburg’s assistant head of school for academic affairs. “This series is the first in a set of discussions that we will conduct over the course of the year with students on pressing topics.”

On October 19, Alex Nowrasteh, a senior immigration-policy analyst at the Cato Institute’s Center for Global Liberty and Prosperity, opened the series with a speech in the Chapel and a lunch with students afterward. Hissong’s talk will follow a similar format; his remarks will begin the session, followed by a Q&A period moderated by Eliza DuBose ’20 and then general questions from the audience. Hissong will have lunch on campus with interested students after the event.

The series concludes Friday, November 2, with students gathering in small groups for discussions of the immigration issue to be facilitated by faculty members. Groups will examine the various points raised by speakers and previous discussions and add context to the lectures.

The series comes on the heels of three summer-reading selections for Mercersburg students that examined Latinx themes, including immigration: Tattoos on the Heart: The Power of Boundless Compassion by Gregory Boyle, I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter by Erika L. Sánchez, and The Far Away Brothers: Two Young Migrants and the Making of an American Life by Lauren Markham.

Boyle will give Mercersburg’s Schaff Lecture on Ethics and Morals December 10, while Sánchez will speak on campus April 19, 2019.
Founded in 1893 in the heart of Pennsylvania and the Mid-Atlantic, Mercersburg is a private, coed, college preparatory boarding school with approximately 435 students (15 percent are day), grades 9-12 and postgraduate.
We offer 170 courses, including AP and Honors, more than $7 million in financial aid, 26 varsity sports, and a state-of-the-art performing and visual arts center.
Located 90 minutes from Washington, D.C., and Baltimore, and within easy driving distance of New York City, Philadelphia, and Pittsburgh.
100 Academy Drive, Mercersburg, PA 17236
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